Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Playin' possum

Maureen Tucker was the last original member to leave the Velvet Underground. When Tucker left the band in ’72, she said that she had no interest in playing in any other bands and got a job working as a data entry operator. She got married and moved to Phoenix Arizona where she raised her family. She did play in a few local bands most notably Paris 1942, which included the Bishop Brothers of The Sun City Girls.

In 1980, Tucker decided it was time to do a solo album. Other than a 1974 recording with Jonathon Richman, this was Tucker’s first recording since she recorded some demos for the Velvet’s LOADED back in 1970. This is a true solo album, Tucker did everything herself – drums, guitars, singing, engineering, mixing – in her living room. Tucker says the LP was recorded in between diaper changes.

The album was recorded using two tape machines, a four track and a two track. Everything was mixed back & forth on those two machines which explains the muffled sound. One song needed a saxophone part so Maureen went out and got a sax then taught herself how to play the four notes she needed for the song.

The record is very good, much better than some of the things her old bandmates have done in real studios. Maureen released the record on her own Trash label.

All of the songs but one are covers, mostly old rock & roll. “Slippin’ & Slidin’” gets done twice. “Louie, Louie” gets a run-through (with the 4 note sax part), there’s also “Heroin” , a Bob Dylan song that sounds like Half Japanese and one by errr, Vivaldi. Really!

Best of all are the two Bo Diddley songs. One is a cover, the other is a Mo original. Diddley is Mo’s biggest influence and she sounds like she’s really having fun here.

Right after this, Tucker released a 7” of “Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow”/”Around & Around”. I don’t have this record, can anybody make me a copy?


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